Lesbian couple covered in blood after homophobic attack by gang of men on London bus

‘We must have kissed or something because these guys came after us’

Abby Young-Powell
Friday 07 June 2019 15:58 BST
Woman and girlfriend left covered in blood after 'homophobic attack' by gang of men on London bus

A lesbian couple were hospitalised with facial injuries and left covered in blood after being attacked by a group of men after they kissed on a night bus in north London.

Melania Geymonat, a 28-year-old Ryanair cabin crew member from Uruguay, shared a photo on Facebook taken just after she and her girlfriend, Chris, had been assaulted.

The couple were travelling home to Camden after a date, in the early hours of 30 May, when they were attacked by a group of four men.

“We climbed upstairs and took the front seats,” Ms Geymonat said. “We must have kissed or something because these guys came after us. I don’t remember if they were already there or if they got on after us.”

The “hooligans” then demanded the two women kiss for their entertainment, harassed them and threw coins, she said.

“They described sexual positions ... the word ‘scissors’ stuck in my mind,” Ms Geymonat said.

Ms Geymonat said she tried to calm the situation down by making jokes, while Chris pretended to be ill. She then describes how the attack escalated, with the gang of men punching them both in the face until they were covered in blood.

“The next thing I know I’m being punched,” Ms Geymonat wrote. “I got dizzy at the sight of my blood and fell back.”

The Metropolitan Police has appealed for witnesses and information about the attackers, who ran off the bus.

The number of hate crimes reported to police across the country’s transport network has doubled over the past five years, according to British Transport Police figures obtained by The Independent last year.

Ms Geymonat said she hasn’t been able to go back to work, that her belongings were stolen and her nose may be broken.

“I’m tired of being [seen] as a sexual object ... these situations are usual for gay friends who are beaten up just because [of their sexuality],” she added.

“We have to endure verbal harassment and chauvinist, misogynistic and homophobic violence because when you stand up for yourself s**t like this happens.”

Laura Russell, director of campaigns policy and research at Stonewall, told The Independent: “This attack is an upsetting reminder of how much we still have to do for LGBT+ equality. It’s tempting to think that in 2019, we are safe from attacks like these, and indeed we all should be. But sadly, this isn’t the reality.”

Government research has found more than two-thirds of LGBT+ people said they have had to avoid holding hands with a same-sex partner for fear of a negative reaction from others. “This attack is a reminder of why,” Ms Russell said.

People across the world are currently celebrating Pride Month with an array of carnivals and street parades to recognise the impact the LGBT+ community has had on the world.

“I just hope that in June [attacks] like this can be spoken about loudly so they stop happening,” Ms Geymonat said.

Anyone who witnessed the incident or who has information that could assist the investigation is asked to contact police on 101 or tweet @MetCC and quote CAD737/30May. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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